Monday, June 10, 2013

What will YOU do after your kids graduate?

Finding yourself after the kids graduate

I’m here to tell you that I have the nicest butt around – well, Boston Butt that is. Thanks to Rodhe’s IGA I scored 30 pounds of these beautiful cuts for $1.28 a pound. I’m sure it was a Memorial Day sale, but it sure came in handy when I needed lots of meat to feed our grad party crowd. I’m even competing with a friend, who also bought some of the meat, as to whose butt looks better when done. Game on.

I’m nostalgic as I write this because normally I write about getting a great deal or figuring out how to make extra cash. I’m nostalgic because I’ve been down memory lane this week getting ready for this grad party. I know, I know – I’ve been writing about it for weeks. But since I’m the one who gets to write then I guess, dear reader, you get to hear some more. I still feel 18. Wasn’t it just yesterday (instead of actually 26 years ago) that I walked down the middle aisle of Hiland High School and received my diploma in a blue floral print dress with white heels? I strode down the aisle with the surge that only being free of school forever can bring. It’s exhilarating, exciting and a feeling that is full of promise. Accomplishment is what it is, wrapped up in a day full of pomp and circumstance, then joyful bliss as you throw your cap in the air. 

With each successive graduation of my kids, be it from college or high school, I know I’m getting older. Why then, do I feel even better? Even stronger? Ready to tackle the world? Is it because I’ve done the job God handed me? The one where you are to “raise a child in the way he will go”? I kept my kids clean, didn’t let them eat dirt, fed them, made sure they went to school without too many days pretending they were sick and got them to graduation. It must be the feeling of another accomplishment – my kids are raised. They are good. They are on their path. It’s a most humbling feeling, yet one that feels full of so much promise – for them AND for me. It’s time for me to let them go and get out of their way. Through this process I find myself. I find the younger version of me, the one who had so many dreams that held exciting tidbits for the future. This is what we need to find when our days of wiping dirty butts are over, when being a taxi turns into waving goodbye. That is when we turn around as they leave and see all that is STILL in store for us. Even though it’s their time, it has become my time as well. The future stretches out for me as I reach to embrace it.